2023-11-09 Animation & Rigging module meeting

The meeting will be on 2023-11-09T17:00:00Z. It is open for everybody interested to join on Google Meet (link below).

People present are referred to by first name for brevity. Others are referred to by full name.

Present: Brad Clark, Christoph Lendenfeld, Eduardo Rubio, Jeremy Bot, MohammadHossein Jamshidi, Nate Rupsis, Nathan Vegdahl, Paolo Acampora



(a.k.a. Christoph is a machine.)

Short-term goals / Ongoing Work

  • Sybren StĂĽvel has been making great progress on implementing the new animation data model.
  • Nathan is working on hierarchical bone collections for Blender 4.1. Goal is to be both backwards and forward-compatible (opening 4.1 files in 4.0 will just flatten the hierarchy).
  • Christoph is working on improving Blender’s key framing workflows.
  • Nate: #1055029: Anim: Action bake custom properties 4. Currently under review.

Demo Time! Rigify control selection improvements.

  • Paolo: I use modifier keys to select/deselect bones in the Rig Layers panel, fast and cheap picker for you!
    • rigify_layer_picker.mp4 - Google Drive
    • Paolo: wanted to select root control, but it was below ground plane. So changed the Rigify layer UI to let me select controls by shift-clicking on the layers.
    • Paolo: down side is you can no longer click-drag to enable/disable multiple layers at once.
    • Paolo: I would like to incorporate this into Rigify proper.
    • Everyone: this looks great.
    • Nathan: has some overlap with selection sets, bone picker, etc. Great stuff.
    • Decision: we want this, but should run it by Ivan Cappiello and Alexander Gavrilov first. We should get their buy in.

Patch Review & Decision Time

  • For Anim: Action bake custom properties should non-animated properties get keyed?
    • Brad: ideally things that aren’t animated shouldn’t be keyed when baking, but that’s not how it works right now anyway. We should change it in the future, but for now just bake non-animated properties regardless to be consistent with the current functionality and get it out the door.
    • Nathan: agreed, let’s just bake everything for now, and come back later to redesign things.
    • Eduardo: what is everything? E.g. materials?
    • Nate: right now it’s just the poseable rig and its custom properties.
    • Decision: just bake “everything” for now. Redesign later to make it better.
  • Isolating F-Curves with #114407: Anim: View FCurve of Property in the Graph Editor
    • Jeremy: awesome.
    • Christoph: the DillonGoo animators also wanted it to hide other channels, so I added it as a global preference. But you can also frame channels with the normal operator, and it seems like they should be consistent. Should they both hide other channels?
    • Brad: agreed that they should stay consistent, at least.
    • Nate: seems like it should be in the editor settings, not global preferences.
    • Nathan: if the fcurve gets selected when framing, then you can shift-H to hide the other channels.
    • Paolo: what about making it a property of the operator?
    • Christoph: then it gets reset when you start Blender again.
    • Christoph: also thought about basing it on a modifier key, but then the functionality is super hidden.
    • Nate: what about hovering over a property and pressing numpad-zero frames, and slash frames-and-isolates?
    • Christoph: backslash does set the hidden property of other objects in the 3d view, though, it’s like a different mode. Shift-H would be the more consistent hotkey with the rest of Blender in terms of hiding behavior.
    • Christoph: I’ll try is using a modifier key, and add it to the tooltip for the operator.
    • Nathan: what about the “Only Show Selected F-curve Keyframes” and “Unselected F-Curve Opacity” features? Are the DillonGoo guys aware you can effectively get “hide unselected fcurve” functionality with those? Maybe this whole discussion is unnecessary.
    • Brad: let’s get it into people’s hands and see how it feels.
    • Nate: should we bring actual backslash isolation (as in the 3d viewport) to the graph editor as well?
    • Decision: go with Christoph’s proposal about ctrl-clicking the menu item to frame+isolate for now, and see how it feels in practice.

Next Meeting

The next meeting will be on Tuesday 2023-11-14T11:00:00Z. Again it will be open for everybody who’s interested. The provisionary meeting agenda will be linked in the #animation-module channel before the meeting.


In such cases, IMO it’s best to go to Blender’s design of having small, atomic tools. I think Nathan’s proposal aligns best with that.